Spring has Sprung... with STORMS!

It is that time of year when Texas Weather throws the steering wheel out the window and makes life interesting. I have sen first hand the devastation that can be caused by tornadoes and hurricanes not only to structures but to lives. But it doesn't have to be a big storm to be an emergency for your family. A gas leak, plumbing flood, or a power outage may mean you have to evacuate your home fast and for a few days.

Being prepared can help minimize some of the stress for you and your pet should you need to evacuate your home.

-CRATE TRAINING
OK I get it .. your dog doesn't NEED the crate. But if you need to evacuate to a shelter your dog will be required to be crated. Or if you dog is injured they will be crated at the animal hospital... so to minimize the stress for your pet why not teach them the crate is a happy safe place? A crate with a familiar blanket or bed will be a safe haven in an emergency

-ALERT STICKER
On a front window of your home will alert first responders of the number and kind of pets in your home. This will assist in getting them to safety. IF you are able to evacuate with your pet, and have the time write EVACUATED on the sticker.

-ID
Layer your id to help assure a prompt reunion if you are separated from your pet. A collar with tags, microchip (is your information current?) and write your cell phone number on your pet... if your pet has long fur write it in the inside of an ear, if your dog is a dark color you can get a white or silver marker. This sounds silly but it is faster then scanning and may mean a quicker reunion. Keep a picture of your pet on your phone.. I also keep a copy of my pets vaccinations records as a picture.

-Veterinary Contacts
Obviously you want the name/number of your veterinarian in your phone but also have the name, address and phone number of the closest Emergency clinics.

-SAFE HAVEN
Do you have family or friends, a boarding facility or hotel names that accept pets? If you cannot car for your pets who is your backup caregiver? In a large scale emergency your local shelter may also offer temporary housing for your pets.

-EMERGENCY GO BAG
If you look on line you can buy a "Go Bag" but assembling one is easy. Check out the check list and make sure you have it all.

Obviously different species have different needs so check out this article by the sASPCA on Disaster Preparednes